Wednesday, February 29, 2012

ebay hates you, unless you're a mega established company. then they're all, 'hey, let's be besties!'

Catchy post title, yeah?

So, as you know I have a pretty sweet vintage store on Etsy, but you may not know I have rocked a pretty sick (in a good way, silly) store over at Ebay for even longer. I never talk about it, because over the past few years Ebay has become a bit of an ugly step sister in comparison to Etsy. This is not in the sense that the traffic is smaller, because sadly it is much higher. I'm talking in the sense that they do next to nothing to help smaller sellers and do everything to cater to large volume stores that are generally already well established businesses with websites of their own (ie. the debacle). 

Even with that, I have still been pro-Ebay. I was even juiced several months ago, when Ebay's official Twitter account started following me on Twitter. FYI-They only follow 779 people and have over 88,000 followers. My ego felt pretty sweet that day. Oh, how times have changed.  

Ebay followed Kim K, Timmy Hilfiger, and A natural progression, really.

I forgot to mention that I am a top-rated seller over there, which is something that I have taken pride in over the past couple of years. Even though the program is highly flawed, in that if in one year three people out of the several hundred gave me a one for any ridiculous reason (trust me, I make mistakes, but sometimes buyers are ridiculous in their reasoning) then my top-rated status would disappear, along with the 20% discount that is applied to final value fees. This is because people don't realize how important it is to leave five stars, so many leave four stars, bringing the value down. Confusing, I know.

Moving on. The other day I got to read a SUPER exciting email about all the GREAT changes Ebay is implementing beginning June 1st.

So, the email read:

Starting in June, Top-rated sellers will need to have tracking information uploaded to eBay within their stated handling time on 90% or more of their transactions with US buyers. As of June 1, the 20% final value fee discount and greatest on average boost in Best Match will go to those listings from Top-rated sellers that include 1-day handling and a minimum 14-day return policy with a money-back refund option. Listings without these two services will still have the Top-rated seller badge and some boost in Best Match but will not earn the discounts or the highest average boost in Best Match. 

Ok, so let me break it down for you. I don't have a problem with the 90% tracking information. That makes sense. I get delivery confirmation on everything I send, so that's covered. The other two stipulations is where things get shady for me. 

I have to go from having a non return policy to 14 days? Doesn't Ebay realize that some people may be tempted to pull the classic leave the tags on the item for the event and return after(modified for the internet age)? I had one person recently ask if they could return an item that I know they bought to wear on Valentine's day. Conveniently they asked on February 15th. So, yes, it may sound paranoid, but it happens. Probably more than you think. Couldn't they say a three or five day policy? Why two weeks? That's ridiculous. 

And now to the biggest problem I have: one day handling time. Are you kidding me Ebay? You say you want sellers to act more like the stores they buy from online. Here's some news for you: most stores that I buy from don't send out my items for at least 2 days, if not three or more. As a seller who has always been quick with shipping, I probably shouldn't mind this, but there are situations when one day handling is just not an option. It also makes the buyers even more critical than they already are, if I were to wait a whole TWO days to ship something. 

I'm glad that I can work hard to maintain a top-rated status, but lose any monetary benefits that I get from this. Sounds so worth the time and effort. 

So, as if all this weren't enough, I was directed to a town hall meeting transcript and this one quote really stood out to me. It was in response to a seller's complaint about the new policy and said, "We're moving ahead with the program because we heard from sellers that this was the way they thought we should go."

Are you serious?

Ebay is trying to say that they are implementing ridiculous changes that are difficult for a majority of sellers to follow because they heard other sellers wanted it? THAT IS RIDICULOUS. It isn't just a little ridiculous, either. It is "I am about to have an aneurysm, because I hate when corporations make up lies" levels of ridiculous. 

There is also this terrible exchange between an irate seller and Ebay/the Guru (wtf?) concerning expectations buyers have if they were to buy something from SERIOUSLY. Read it here. Another note to Ebay: Walmart doesn't send out things I buy from them online in one day. Just saying. 

I just hate the fact that Ebay caters to large stores and not to mid-level stores like mine. If there has ever been a micro/macrocosm for the plight of the middle classes, this is it. If you don't have a store, you can list many items per month for free. If you have a large store, Ebay wants you to continue putting smaller stores out of business, presumably because smaller stores don't make them as much money and take up space/resources. If you have a mid-level store...well, no one cares. 

I want to say that I rarely complain when everyone else does about Ebay. Even with their higher fees, I've stuck with them and *gulp* even defended them from fee increases to their slightly criminal change to charging final value fees on SHIPPING. Never again. It is so depressing that this is my full time job. I guess I will be moving a majority of my vintage stuff back to Etsy, but what about the new stuff I sell? 

I long for the day when there is a viable alternative to selling things on Ebay, but where is it? Regardless of your choices, there just isn't a site that brings as much traffic and so I continue to sell on Ebay(at least until they blackball me), every day losing a little more self respect.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

lisa frank: my idol.

Yesterday, I had a humorous exchange on Twitter with Amanda, one of the lovely ladies behind Miskabelle Vintage, which is a pretty clutch store on Etsy and a killer blog you can check out here. It read as follows:

It got me thinking about Lisa Frank. Yes, sometimes Chanel takes a backseat to mass market stationary. Naturally I had to turn to Wikipedia (where everything is true!) for some info on the best artist that any 10 year old girl (and some boys) can name. 

I learned that she started her company when she was only 24! Also, her success and ability to venture into everything from notebooks to lunch boxes came as a result of her successful sticker line. When she divorced her husband, who was CEO of the company, she was assigned control of the company. I never knew it (or maybe I knew it along deep down in my heart), but I think Lisa Frank is my idol. 

Here are some classic pics from her stuff, as if anyone out there doesn't know who she is:

Righteous underwater love between interracial dolphins. The world can learn from Lisa Frank.
Puffins can hang out with polar bears without the fear of being eaten. Also, check out how happy they are even in the face of global warming which has caused most of their ice to crack. That's harmony.
If this is heaven, count me in.

I hope this post brought some nostalgic awesomeness to your day and that we all take some time and reflect on the greatness of Lisa Frank. She may not be the best artist that ever lived, but I am pretty sure she easily captured what life would be like if you were a ten year old who dropped acid. And who doesn't love that?

roswell recap - season 1 - episode 2

Season1, Episode 2 - The Morning After (scandalous title!)

I am actually following through with my promise (to myself, who else would care?) to re-cap every episode of the show Roswell, a little gem I found on Netflix. To learn more about my ridiculous love of teen soaps and now, Roswell, read this post. Also, this site is where I snaked the screenshots from. Big ups to them.

Liz ponders the idea of Max staying up all night thinking of her as she does with him. Cue scene of Max snoring. Then someone tries to break in Max’s room, but it is just Michael. Why don’t the bedrooms of TV characters ever have screens on their windows? Michael is too juiced to sleep. Crazy alien stuff is brewing. 

Maria starts calling aliens Czechoslovakians. Makes sense. A new teacher wonders where Michael is and why he isn’t in class, which Liz finds weird. No, liz. That’s her job. She’s supposed to ask where students are when they aren’t in class. Anyways, it is the lady who played Dexter’s wife before she was murdered on Dexter. Not pertinent to the storyline, but I thought you might be interested.

Maria wants to tell Alex. OMFG. Never trust teenage girls with your life shattering secrets, aliens. Also, I still hate Maria’s hair. Kyle is still way into Liz, but Liz not so much. She has caught alien fever. Alien LOVE fever. Liz blows him off in favor of seeing what the new teacher has in her hands, which ends up being Michael’s school file. 

Liz freaks a bit and goes to Michael’s house. It isn’t a house, so much as it is a trailer, where his foster dad sits about in his boxers. Super classy digs. If I were a foster parent, I think I would get pissed about every foster child in every tv show ever. They always live in trailers and drink beer for breakfast. Michael thanks Liz for her keen observational skills. And for not vomiting at the sight of his foster dad in boxers. That second part was inferred.

Monday, February 27, 2012

has it really been two years?

Just noticed that today was my 2 year Etsy-versary. Maybe a nice reflective post is in order for some time this week, but until then, there's a pretty huge 50% off section you can check out here

Also, listing a ton of new inventory this week such as these three lovely items available, right now:

So, stop on by and here's to another year of vintage sales:)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Monday, February 20, 2012

stayin classy at home depot

My nieces are gross. In a hilarious way.

Happy Monday/Presidents Day, folks!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

roswell recap - season 1 - pilot

I am actually following through with my promise (to myself, who else would care?) to re-cap every episode of the show Roswell, a little gem I found on Netflix. To learn more about my ridiculous love of teen soaps and now, Roswell, read this post. Also, this site is where I snaked the screenshots from. So, big ups to them.

Season 1, Episode 1 – Pilot (super clever title!)

So, the show starts with a cute brunette writing a journal entry about how 5 days ago she died and then things “got really weird.” Oh, teens!


Then we see the same girl, Liz, working in a ridiculous alien waitress uniform, messing with the head of some tourists concerning a fake alien photo. The tourists look like cartoon characters from the cartoon Doug.  Another waitress tells her that a hot guy named Max is checking her out again and she’s all NO WAY, but he totally is. Max is the Luke Perry of the show as he looks like a 30 year old playing a 16 year old. Thanks to Wikipedia I see that he was around 26 when this show was on, so not too far off there. I digress. The other waitress is Maria. Based on her name and the fact that she suddenly starts speaking Spanish, my guess is that she’s going to be the wacky Latina best friend on the show. Nice of the WB not to play into stereotypes. One other thing: she has really terrible hair. 

Two burly dudes argue over something(probably who had more fries) and they have a gun! People in Roswell are serious about their diner food, yo. The gun goes off and Liz goes down, so I guess she got shot. Hot Max runs to her, much to the chagrin of his spikey haired friend. He rips her uniform open and at first I’m like what the whaaat, but then he puts his hand over her gun shot and heals her, while seeing flashes of each other when they were kids. I guess he’s pretty much been stalking her since they were 5. Seriously, though, the wound is gone, so that's pretty nuts. He breaks a ketchup bottle and tells her she broke it when she fell. Then to be real cool and secretive, he and his friend run out of the crowded restaurant IN FRONT OF EVERYONE and peel out in a jeep. Yup, non-suspect and playing it real cool.

Can I digress for a moment about the sheriff?

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

five songs that make me go awwwwe

In honor of the love fest that is this week, here are 5 tunes that make even a cold heart like mine melt a little:

Ben Kweller - Thirteen
If I ever get married, this will be wedding song. Period.

Dierks Bentley - Come a Little Closer
I'm not that into country music, but damn, this song is hot.

Damien Rice - Cannonball
I'm not exactly sure what this is about, but I think has to do with the beginning of a relationship and the whole wanting to see the person all the time, but still trying to play it cool. Or something. In any event, it is probably the happiest interpretation of any Damien Rice song I can think of.

Counting Crows - Anna Begins
"And every time she sneezes, I think it's love." Well, yep, those are some sweet lyrics.

Jack Johnson - Better Together
You know I had to throw a little JJ in there.

What songs give you butterflies? Share below!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Thursday, February 9, 2012

guilty pleasures

If you follow me on Twitter, you may know I have a mega embarrassing guilty pleasure: I love soap operas aimed at teenagers. Not the daily things your mother (or my one college roommate who seemed to be a disgruntled 45 yr old housewife stuck in a 20 year old's body) used to watch that are dwindling in variety in favor of such great shows as The Chew (I kid, that show is the WORST), but the hour long shows that are generally featured on The CW or Fox. I know. It is awful, but I love them. Maybe it is nostalgia or a female Peter Pan syndrome of sorts, but even at 26 I still love me some teen soaps. From Dawson's Creek to Vampire Diaries, I have seen them all (not really, but probably embarrassingly close).

Oh, Dawson. You oversized head heartthrob of the 90s.

So, what does that have to do with the bloggy boo? Well, Netflix recently struck a deal with the CW so they have a Mecca when it comes to teen soaps, but they also have old school ones that aired on the WB back in the late 90s. Little secret: if I have nothing to do and/or I am feeling under the weather, I have been known to stay in bed all morning and pound episodes. Did I just liken tv shows to beer? Yes. In honor of the time spent hating to love said shows, I have decided to delve back into the world of reviews and do a humorous episode guide for a series. My first crop of reviews will center on the wonderfully bizarre (and equally addictive) Roswell, which Netflix recommended I watch one day. Thank you, Netflix. alien style.

In case you are unfamiliar(let's face it, that's probably everyone), it is a story about Roswell, New Mexico and hot aliens. No, seriously. They're supposed to be teens, so I might sound a little Polanski on that, but I use the term "teens" loosely as I am pretty sure the main guy is in his late 20s playing a 16 year old. I like it better that way, so I don't feel like a creepster being all "damn, he's hot."

So check back often for episode reviews and if you feel particularly adventurous, check the show out for yourself. I'm almost done with season one and it is terrible...or terribly awesome. The first couple of reviews should be up within the week! Stay embarrassed, my friends. I know I will.

be my valentine: vintage couple #1

In honor of the big day of love coming up, I have decide to steal borrow some pics for a daily vintage couple in love. 


A little va-va-voom for your Thursday evening.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

i'm baaaaack.

In case you don't follow me on Twitter and were extremely worried, I didn't die. I am back to blog about life, love, vintage, the good and bad movies/TV shows we watch on Netflix, and cats. Can't forget about cats. Stay tuned this week for some lovely new posts.